Brazil, at last
Three hours before the scheduled start of the game they came, in those jerseys, the most famous football colours in the history of the sport.
They streamed in from all corners and just before the kick off of the men's Olympic final here on Saturday, Brazil's football temple had turned into a heaving mass of yellow.
They all wanted to be witnesses, and see the team collect the country's first football gold medal, in South America's first Olympic Games.
They all were desperate for their men to beat Germany and gain a small measure of revenge for the most traumatic episode in Brazilian football.
And at the end of 120 minutes of football, and the agony of penalty kicks, Brazil erupted in joy.
Brazil's forward Neymar celebrates with his son. PHOTO: AFP
Neymar, the golden boy of Brazilian football, scored the decisive spot kick, after Nils Petersen saw his effort saved wonderfully by Weverton, and signalled the start of a kind of celebration only this football-mad nation can put on.
The gold medal will also help soothe the still raw wound of Germany's 7-1 mauling of Brazil in the World Cup semi-final in Belo Horizonte two years' ago, after the hosts denied the European giants their first Olympic football triumph.
The score was tied at 1-1 after 90 minutes, and while there was little to choose between the two teams, the hosts were deserved winners after showing more ambition throughout the game.
Neymar celebrates scoring the winning goal with his teammates during the penalty shoot-out of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games men's football gold medal match between Brazil and Germany. PHOTO: AFP
Neymar certainly made his mark at the Maracana.
One of three overage players allowed in each team in what is effectively an Under-23 tournament, the Barceona star scored with a vicious free-kick in the first half and struck a Bolt pose as the Jamaican sprint superstar looked on from the stands, and Brazil were already dreaming of gold.
But this is Germany, a football nation that traditionally never knows when it is beaten.
And so it proved.
Horst Hrubesch's side were patient, always believing they would get a chance, and after a couple of shocking passing errors by the Brazilians out of defence, captain Maximillian Meyer calmly stroked home a cross from the right to deflate the home side.
From then on, Brazil slowly ramped up the pressure, while the Germans expertly frustrated them by playing keep ball.
Inevitably, it came down to the roulette of penalties, and, fittingly, Neymar's last kick of the Olympic men's 2016 football tournament was pure gold.